When a community comes together to help those in need, powerful things can happen. Here at FundLatinos, we champion the power of community with every new campaign, in an effort to connect Latinos across the map. One recent campaign has seen the overwhelming support of a loving and generous community. Sibyl Perret-Gentil, a resident of Orlando, Florida community, suffered a stroke in December, leaving the right side of her body partially paralyzed.
The single mother and blogger moved to the United States from Venezuela a year ago, where she worked as a journalist, and has since taken an active role in her new community. Together with her young daughter Mafer, Sibyl maintains an active social media presence. She shares her experiences, reflections, and other helpful tips such as recipes on a blog called, “Vida Como Mama” (Life as a Mom). Sibyl also leads a community group called Orlando Mom’s Club, the first club for Latina moms in Orlando.
In such a short time, Sibyl has made a tremendous impact on her community. Having moved to a new country with no other family members to count on, Sibyl was fortunate to have the support of her Latino community when tragedy struck.
The same night of Sibyl’s stroke, Myrah Falco Duque, known for her influential work as CouponMamacita in the Latino digital and offline circles, went to work to create a FundLatinos crowdfunding campaign to help her friend. Myrah – with more than 50K followers on Twitter and close to 65K followers on her FB page – enlisted the digital influencers in the community – like the Orlando Mom’s Club and the national Latinos in Social Media (LATISM) – to spread the news about Sibyl’s health plight.
They took over Sibyl’s social media accounts and shared the campaign almost every day, on Facebook, Instagram and other feeds. What followed was an outpouring of generosity and support—within less than a month, the campaign raised $4,850 from a total of 133 contributors. In the meantime, Sibyl’s prognosis has improved, and she was able to begin a physical therapy regimen.
Thankfully, as of the first week of January, Sibyl was given clearance to return home and continue her therapy. She has remained in good spirits throughout this entire process, and is on her way to recovery. Sibyl is grateful for the love and support from her Latino community in this unbelievably difficult and unexpected moment in her life.